Waterford, Maine

Sweden food pantry serves Waterford, region

The Sweden Community Church is a busy place on the first and third Wednesdays of each month.

Cars line Rt. 93 next to the church by the town office on those days to access the Sweden Food Pantry that serves a dozen western Maine communities. Among those towns are Waterford, Stoneham, Lovell, Stow and Albany Township.

Sweden Food Pantry Sweden Food Pantry

Sweden Food Pantry volunteers Carol Madsen of Waterford (left) and Claudia Blondell of Sweden at left and Nancy Michaud.

During 2013, the pantry served nearly 100 households each month, distributing food to eligible families. The pantry located in the basement operates from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. but that doesn’t stop patrons from arriving early to get in line.

“We don’t turn anybody away,” said volunteer Claudia Blondell, noting that each family is given enough food to last five to seven days.

The Sweden Food Pantry is a 501(c)3 under the auspices of the Sweden Community Church and donations are deductible.

The budget last year was $4,422 with an income of $2,195. Pantry Committee Chair Shirley Crowe reported that a balance from the previous years plus a $1,500 grant received in late December 2012 allowed the food pantry to continue to operate in 2013.

Waterford, which does not have its own food pantry, raised $500 this year to support the Sweden effort.

Volunteers make regular trips to Good Shepard Food Bank, where $1 buys $10 worth of food. Pietree Orchard and the Bridgton Lakes Region Rotary have supported the pantry along with area churches and businesses. Pietree also donates fresh fruits and vegetables.

The pantry began in a doublewide trailer on Knights Hill in 2007. 

Sweden Food Pantry

Charlotte Ackerman sorts bread at the Sweden Food pantry.

 

Source: Mutiny Brook Times Issue 104